An Acoustic and Perceptual Study of Final Stops Produced by Profoundly Hearing Impaired Adolescents Purpose This study investigated formant frequencies for their role as acoustic and perceptual correlates to the place of articulation of Cantonese final stops produced by profoundly hearing impaired speakers. Method Speakers were 10 Cantonese adolescents (mean age = 13;5 [years;months]) who were profoundly hearing impaired (HI). Control speakers ... Research Article
Research Article  |   February 01, 2006
An Acoustic and Perceptual Study of Final Stops Produced by Profoundly Hearing Impaired Adolescents
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Edward Khouw
    The University of Hong Kong
  • Valter Ciocca
    The University of Hong Kong
  • Contact author: Edward Khouw, 8C Clear View, Discovery Bay, Hong Kong. E-mail: edkhouw@mac.com
Article Information
Hearing & Speech Perception / Acoustics / Hearing Disorders / Speech, Voice & Prosody / Speech / Research Articles
Research Article   |   February 01, 2006
An Acoustic and Perceptual Study of Final Stops Produced by Profoundly Hearing Impaired Adolescents
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, February 2006, Vol. 49, 172-185. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2006/014)
History: Received June 28, 2004 , Revised November 7, 2004 , Accepted May 27, 2005
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, February 2006, Vol. 49, 172-185. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2006/014)
History: Received June 28, 2004; Revised November 7, 2004; Accepted May 27, 2005
Web of Science® Times Cited: 3

Purpose This study investigated formant frequencies for their role as acoustic and perceptual correlates to the place of articulation of Cantonese final stops produced by profoundly hearing impaired speakers.

Method Speakers were 10 Cantonese adolescents (mean age = 13;5 [years;months]) who were profoundly hearing impaired (HI). Control speakers were 10 adolescents (mean age = 13;5) with normal hearing. Stimuli were Cantonese words that were minimally contrastive in place of final stops (/p, t, k/). Listeners were 10 final-year speech therapy students. The frequencies of F1, F2, and F3 were measured at the middle, 40 ms before the end, and at the end of the vocalic segments.

Results Control speakers distinguished place contrasts through formant frequency differences at the end positions of the vowels. HI speakers produced final stops with missing formant transitions and neutralized vowels preceding final stops. Listeners relied on F2 transition cues for stops produced by control speakers, whereas F1 and F3 transition cues were used for stops produced by HI speakers.

Conclusions Formant frequencies of final stops produced by HI speakers showed reduced place distinction. When listeners identified the place of final stops produced by HI speakers, they relied on formant frequency cues that were different from those used for stops produced by control speakers.

Acknowledgments
This manuscript describes work that was carried out in partial fulfillment of Edward Khouw’s PhD degree at The University of Hong Kong. We would like to thank the participants. We would also like to thank Hong Kong School for the Deaf and Lutheran School for the Deaf for their kind support.
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